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Soft T-shirt transfers? Answered

I've seen a couple of vintage shops using really high quality transfers put on t-shirts to make them look old. (So the t-shirt and transfer look old and soft like a genuine vintage tee) The transfers you get in shops always end up feeling crispy and cheap, and looking glossy. Does anyone know where I can get decent transfers or an alternative method? (Not fabric paint!) Thanks! x



Best Answer 10 years ago

If you only want a black image there is a way that works very well and it is totally wash proof. Take the image you want to print and make a copy of it with a copier - not an inkjet printer, it has to be a toner copier. place it upside down on a light t shirt and holding it firmly in place, paint the back with CirtuSolve (it must be available everywhere, I got mine at Wholefoods) sot the whole paper is lightly saturater and still holding it firmly in place rub with the back of a spoon. Do this a whole bunch of times on scraps until you have the feel for how much to rub, how much to paint, etc. I have done this over 100 times for a project I was working on, I got really good at it but still the image is not super, super crisp, so you will get that vintage look you are after.


8 years ago

I work in the shirt printing industry part time after being done in court and I can tell you the best bet is buying versatrans transfers from versatrans.com they are not to expensive and give great transfer quality almost as good as screen printing itself.


10 years ago

Yes, the shops use DTG (Direct to Garment) printing. The ink is actually applied directly to the shirt. This not only creates a completely smooth transfer (as there is no adhesive backing), it also allows them to be very creative with their prints, as they can print anything that could be printed on paper (There is no white ink in most of the machines, so they have to print on lighter garments). Advanced machines are capable of printing on black t-shirts as well, thanks to the use of plastisol ink in the machine.